Sandler reveals tricks to making films

After being interviewed by students about his new film "Little Nicky," Adam Sandler took a few extra minutes to sign autographs for fans. "When we were writing the movie, we were thinking what's going to make people laugh. We just want people to come and have a good time, and be able to talk about what was and was not funny after the movie" said Sandler. / photo by Natalie Fowle
After being interviewed by students about his new film “Little Nicky,” Adam Sandler took a few extra minutes to sign autographs for fans. “When we were writing the movie, we were thinking what’s going to make people laugh. We just want people to come and have a good time, and be able to talk about what was and was not funny after the movie” said Sandler. / photo by Natalie Fowle

by Jazmine Ponce
Managing Editor

At the Four Seasons Hotel in Los Angeles, the cast of the new film “Little Nicky” met to present a panel discussion on the film. Several college students from California schools where able to ask the actors questions. Little Nicky opening Nov. 10, is the new film starring Adam Sandler that revolves around Nicky (Sandler), a the son of the Devil who to save his father must go to New York to stop his brothers from creating a hell on earth.

The panel consisted of Sandler whose previous work includes “Big Daddy,” “Happy Gilmore” and “Waterboy” also co-wrote and produced “Little Nicky’ Also in attendance was Patricia Arquette who stars as Valerie, a design student who is attracted to Nicky. Arquette has previously starred in “Stigmata” and is set to star in “Human Nature” written by Charlie Kaufman (“Being John Malkovich”). Kevin Nealon, a “Saturday Night Live” alumnus, who stars as the gatekeeper cursed by the Devil, Allen Covert who plays Nicky’s roommate Todd and is credited as an associate producer.

The discussion’s main focus was on Sandler and the process of the film. All the cast members approached each question with comedy and there was a variety of people laughing though out.

The movie, which deals with hell and the devil in a comical way, is one of several films in release that deal with the same content. Sandler said that he “does not have a fascination with the Devil.”

“When I was growing up I chose to not think about the stuff, I didn’t want to know it was out there, I just try to pretend in my head that I’ve done enough good things that I’m never going to have to meet the guy,” said Sandler.

The character of Nicky came from someone who was a friend of Sandler’s while growing up and acted and talked just like Nicky. There were actually four different versions of Nicky before settling on the final script. One had Nicky living in Long Island and another had him living in a trailer park as a troubled child who did not know he was the spawn of Satan.

While watching a Sandler film one can almost always see a variety of the same actors such as Rob Schneider (“Big Daddy,” “Waterboy”) and Allen Covert who has been in almost every Sandler movie. To Sandler, the choice to have the same actors in a film is a mix between friendship and having the film work.

“I like hanging out with my friends I think they are very funny. When we are writing the movies half of them are involved in the writing process so they are like ‘I can do that.’ But I trust those guys we have similar tastes in comedy, said Sandler.

The film offers a variety of cameos such as Quentin Tarantino, Dana Carvey and Clint Howard. But it is the fans of Sandler’s films that will notice two characters from previous movies; The Townie from “Waterboy” and Chubbs from “Happy Gilmore.” Creating Chubbs in “Little Nicky” Sandler said it was just wanting to work with Carl Weathers (Chubbs) again that made it happen.

“We were writing the movie so we were in heaven and we thought about Chubbs. We love Carl Weathers, he is a good man, so how can we hang with him for a few more days? So we thought it would make sense to see Chubbs up there,” said Sandler.

“For Schneider’s Townie character, it was a way,” Sandler said to make his friend feel better. Sandler suggested he come watch them film and it was the crowd’s reaction that caused Schneider to reprise his role.

“He comes to the set and there are like 2,000 people out there and they are all screaming ‘Deuce Bigalow’ at him and he started to feel a little better,” said Sandler. “I said ‘The last time I saw you around this many people was when you were the Townie in the ‘Waterboy’ ” and he said ‘Do you have the hat?’ so we got him the hat and he just started screaming ‘you can do it.’ ”

Arquette had been in only one comedy before “Little Nicky.” Being her first full feature comedy and the only main woman cast member in the film Arquette said she really enjoyed working with them because they made her feel like family.

“I felt like I was their little sister, first I was shy then they kept joking around and I would laugh quietly and join in a little bit; they were really protective and sweet.”

“For ‘Little Nicky,’ we thought it would be funny to have a guy who is half angel- half devil and to write a story around that and my contribution is to just come up with some jokes,” said Sandler. Covert, who has worked with him on a variety of films, said that though Sandler’s name is more recognizable he still makes everybody feel like an equal because they are all friends.

“And Sandler never makes anyone feel like they’re in your shadow, he makes sure that everyone in the movie has a chance to be funny, it’s not like he’s sitting there going ‘I’m the funny one and you have to go stand there while I’m funny.’ He wants everyone to be funny because that just makes the movie funny,” said Covert.

“It is a good thing to make a movie that people just go and relax and laugh and they get to hang out with their friends,” said Sandler.

Though “Little Nicky” deals with Heaven, Hell and the Devil, Sandler said he wants people to see it is a story about a person who overcomes his shyness and finds confidence.

“It’s about him actually meeting people who are nice to him and having a good time and learning to be confident, finding people who like you for who you are,” he said. “His mom and dad are good to him so I guess there is some sweetness in the movie.”

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Journalism operations manager at the University of La Verne. Production manager and business manager of the Campus Times.

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